Nigerian Army Kills 300 Minority Shia*
By Jason Ditz
The annual religious procession of Nigeria’s Shi’ite minority seems to get attacked by the Nigerian military every year. Last year, the attack during the procession killed 30 demonstrators, including three children of the group’s spiritual leader.
This year, Shi’ite protesters held an advanced demonstration before the religious process, slamming military attacks against them and throwing rocks at the convoy of a general involved in last year’s crackdown, a move which the Nigerian military labelled an “assassination attempt.” They claimed the Shi’ites were armed with “swords and daggers.”
So once again, the military moved against the Shi’ites in force this weekend, killing around 300 according to the Shi’ite movement. The exact toll could not be determined, however, as the Nigerian military took all the bodies with them when they left.
The Nigerian government claimed only 20 people were killed, while the Nigerian military admitted to having 60 bodies. Locals, however, suggest the toll was much, much higher.